Both the Mexico and Canada border restrictions will lift for vaccinated people only - News 11's Cody Lee reports
SAN LUIS, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - United States borders are about to finally reopen for non-essential travelers, that is, for those who can show proof of vaccination. The Biden administration made the official announcement Wednesday morning.
It's been about 19 months since the borders closed down all to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Land borders are expected to open in November meaning in just a few weeks you’ll be able to cross over if you’re vaccinated.
San Luis Arizona mayor Gerardo Sanchez has been in talks with Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ) and top White House officials for months now urging them to reopen the border.
“Were really going to see a notice of big impact in regards to not only our local economy but to our regional economy… like Yuma, Somerton. There's a lot of people that want to come and visit family members but couldn’t because they were non-essential,” the mayor said.
Businesses taking the biggest hit. Mayor Sanchez says before the pandemic, 70% of sales tax revenue came from pedestrians crossing over to shop and travel but all of that came to a screeching halt last March.
Now, businesses in San Luis and across Yuma are looking forward to an influx of travelers like the taxis near the port. Just one of several industries hit hard during the closure.
Apolinar Guizar is taxi driver.
"This makes me so happy because most of our clients come from Mexico so with this borders reopens means we are going to have more clients and more money," Guizar explained.
Jose Ovante, who works at the correctional facility, was already required to get the vaccine. He thinks this is a good path forward.
“With the vaccination in place, I think that's a good idea due to the fact that even I had the covid and I almost died. So it's good to protect everyone else and yourself,” the San Luis resident said.